ROUND TABLE: HOBO HEADWEAR

Colin Walters at Copper Opening Day

Colin Walters at Copper Opening Day

Who are you and what are you about?
We are a collection of HOmeward BOund humans that found a passion for something so strong we were willing to sacrifice the normal societal path to pursue it. We do things our way, move towards our passions and try to push the creative boundaries of whatever’s in front of us.

Where are you based out of?
Denver, CO

What do you do to support snowboarding?
We support the soul of snowboarding. We've ended up with what I think is the best collection of boarding fools on the planet and some of the highest regarded retailers in the game. This approach has led to tackling some amazing accomplishments we’d never thought possible. This past season was one for the books. Mary just snagged 1st place this past weekend at Rails 2 Riches in Killington, Aidan got ender of the incredible Impaler video, Mark [Wilson] ended Keep The Change's video Homage, Derrek [Lever] and Riley [Nickerson] had full parts in that as well, Blake Geis had some of the most ridiculous footage in Under Dawgs, Dylan [Alito] and Jaeger [Bailey] both had insane parts in Snowboarder Mag’s movie Foreword, Dylan also just landed the cover of Snowboarder Mag's Photo Annual, and the same month Austin Julik-Heine landed cover of your magazine. OG Hobo’s Squiggs and J Bish have also joined the cover club at Snowboard Colorado… I’m not much for tootin my own horn but shit… My friends are incredible.

Hobo X Damage Boardshop Collab

Hobo X Damage Boardshop Collab

We also spend a lot of time catering towards core retailers, AKA @CommissionShops (the shops that impact the soul of this industry). We have recently tweaked our business model to incorporate collaborations with these people as much as possible. We understand that the internet has changed our industry a great deal and shops now rely on local support more than ever. So we came up with a collaboration concept to cater to all of our homies. The first product we offered were stomp pads that were completely made by us in the USA. Recently we partnered with a few to produce Leather Mittens. I'm hyped to announce Trollhaugen in Wisconsin will be running this collab along with Cal-Surf in MN, Oncore in AZ, Satellite, and Lumberyard. This will be an ongoing theme for our business that I am personally thrilled to pursue.

Clear up the worst misconception about your brand.
I haven't heard a whole lot of rumors, but I can tell you we are not trust fund kids and have worked insanely hard to get where we are today. We have always tried to be as transparent as possible and now that Instagram has taken over the world, people get a good clue of who we are pretty fast (@HoboHeadwear).

What do you see as the biggest problem in snowboarding?
If the continued abuse on this planet persists, I’d say warm weather is the largest problem snowboarding is facing. Outside of that I’d say self-entitlement. Kids that get hooked up with a free something or other and then from that point forward expect companies to hand feed them are not good for our industry. I’d like to tell those kids to be grateful, humble, and continue boardin’ because you love it, not because you now feel obligated to do it as a “job.” If you love something enough you’ll figure out how to make it work. It’s a delicate thing to do what you love as a job.

Does the owner of your favorite snowboard company actually snowboard?

Does the owner of your favorite snowboard company actually snowboard?

Who is your target market?
We grew up making headwear that we wanted, so it’s always been about products that our team was interested in. We still live by this principal and are opening up to a larger audience as well. We know how much ladies like to steal their boyfriend’s snapbacks so we have started focusing on them too. Also, we are becoming more interested in all things outdoors, not just snowboarding. We are moving in the direction of making products for the outdoorsmen/fisherman/board doggers/leather lovers/vagabonds/and quality-seeking people. We attempt to make timeless products for these people that look great today and wear in better and better over time.

Any types of people you DON'T want representing your brand?
Hmmm... A couple years ago I probably would have responded with a quick "skiers" answer… But we are maturing a little ourselves and welcome anyone that wants to support a good intentioned company with quality and originality as a top priority. 

Where do see the company in 10 years?
I’ve got big dreams for this life I’m living and I think Hobo will be a part of it the whole way. In 10 years I’d like to have our own production factory in Denver and maybe an additional innovation center somewhere in the mountains off-grid. Creating our products completely from the ground up is a large priority. I’d like to spend most of my time innovating new ideas that promote sustainability and make this world a better place. If all goes to plan, my friends and family will continue to be involved and, most importantly, they themselves will be driven and fulfilled with purpose because this company has meaning. Basically, if I can go down a road as far away from what most Americans do and how most businesses behave I’ll be satisfied.

Have you ever turned down a retail shop that wanted to carry your goods?
Not that I can recall, like I mentioned earlier, we handpick our retailers instead of the other way around. We always know who we are doing business with.

What local shops carry your products?

And if you’re interested in our other locations across the US check out this map.

  • Emage-Denver
  • Satellite-Boulder
  • Lumberyard-Breckenridge
  • BC Surf and Sport-Lakewood/Highlands Ranch/Boulder
  • Woodward-Copper
  • 720-Parker/Denver
  • Anchor-Steamboat
  • Pop Up-Stapleton
  • Big Hit-Breckenridge
  • Decks-Golden

Anything else you want people to know about?
Yes, I want people to know we are in the works of creating the most legitimate business that can be created. From a dream of young high school kids that fell into the right place, met the right people, and devoted everything they had for what they loved. It’s a concept that has disappeared in modern day America. I’d like to go back to a time that people we’re driven by passion and purpose not $.